New York City-based health tech startup BeneStream has closed $1.58 million in seed funding. The investors included Serious Change, The Social Entrepreneurs Fund and Angel Round Capital Fund.
New York, NY, July 2, 2014 – BeneStream, a health tech startup that provides an alternative solution for employers to satisfy the Employee Mandate portion of the Affordable Care Act by handling the enrollment of qualifying low-income workers in Medicaid, rather than private insurance, today announced the close of its seed round of funding. The company raised $1.58 million from angel investors to support anticipated demand resulting from the Employer Mandate taking effect January 1, 2015. BeneStream’s Board of Advisors is a who’s-who of the labor, tech investment, health insurance, and health tech sectors: Andy Stern, Esther Dyson, Kevin Hill, formerly of Oxford Health, Martin Babinec who founded TriNet, and Ashok Subramanian, CEO and Co-founder of Liazon, among others.
“Our investors are excited about the win-win value proposition of enrolling lower income-workers in Medicaid. Businesses will do right by their workers while saving between 80% and 90% of their insurance premium costs,” said Ben Geyerhahn, CEO and Founder.
BeneStream makes it possible for employers to assess who among their low-income staff is eligible for Medicaid and then guide qualifying employees through the enrollment process. A typically confusing and time consuming process is made easy for employees, while significantly saving companies money. At the same time BeneStream helps employers ensure that their entire staff has health insurance and that the company isn’t at risk of violation and fines.
“The Affordable Care Act was designed to ensure that everyone has access to health coverage and by doing so, lower the healthcare cost burden placed on taxpayers,” said Andy Stern, President Emeritus of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). “To accomplish this it’s essential that we ensure that low-income workers use this benefit that they’re entitled to or they are likely to avoid coverage altogether.”
Employers in historically low-profit margin industries are facing millions of dollars of increased costs due to the Employer Mandate and for many this is a major burden that will significantly impact the company’s financial health. At the same time many employees will have an additional expense, upwards of $150 per month, which is enough to be potentially devastating for low-income households. Medicaid expansion was passed to provide quality coverage and assist low-income workers and now covers those earning up to 138% of the poverty rate, i.e. the “working poor”, which for a family of four is $32,900 per year.
“The Affordable Care Act comes at a significant new cost to employers who must add new fundamentals such as payroll analysis and true health risk management for thoughtful plan funding. BeneStream is a radically transformative healthcare cost-saving strategy for businesses. It isn’t an industry standard yet, but it will be.” said George Duczak, Owner and Founder of The American Worker, and a BeneStream investor.
The seed round was led by Serious Change, LP and the firm’s Managing Director, Josh Mailman, and The Social Entrepreneurs Fund. Also participating in the round are:
Angel Round Capital Fund LP (ARC)
Kevin R. Hill, former Executive VP of Sales and Business Development of Oxford Health
Esther Dyson, Chairman, EDventure Holdings
Jeffrey Stephen Wald, Founder, COO and CFO, World Market
Martin Babinec, Founder, Director, TriNet
Martin Investment Holdings, LLC
George V. Duczak, Owner and Founder, The American Worker
Rafael Musher, Founder & CEO of Stax Inc.
A complete list of BeneStream’s board can be found at http://benestream.com/about/.
BeneStream provides the only alternative solution for employers to satisfy the Employee Mandate portion of the Affordable Care Act by handling the enrollment of qualifying employees in Medicaid, rather than private insurance. Medicaid enrollment is a personal benefit that companies do not typically endeavor to handle for their staff. BeneStream was founded by Benjamin Geyerhahn, a healthcare policy expert and member of New York Governor Cuomo’s Health Benefit Exchange Regional Advisory Committee. The company employs a combination of screening and monitoring software and a multilingual call center.